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FONT DECORATING & THE LANGUAGE PROBLEM: PART 1 of 3

Posted by Chris Muema on

JUST IMAGINE . . .

What would your writing experience be like if you could decorate or re-style Chinese writing, or Hindi writing or even Arabic writing?

 

What would Asian and Arabic writing look like if re-styled with the  (The KamaHapa eBLOCK_Regular1)?

Or decorated with the (The KamaHapa eSNO-FLEK_INSERT1)?

But more importantly, is radical re-stylizing of non-European (non-Latin) writing culturally acceptable among that readership?

 

Let’s begin with a little bit of an academic exercise about the effort it takes artists to create font-styles.

Consider for example, the character glyph  (HINDI), which could be translated into a European-Originated character as C (LATIN).

Or the character  (GUJARATI), which could be translated as S (LATIN).

Also consider for example, the character  (ARABIC), which could be translated as I (LATIN).

What about the character  (CHINESE), which could be translated as Z (LATIN).

 

As you can see, the Latin characters have fewer ink-strokes. As well, the Latin characters used in the above examples are among the simplest to convert backwards into the original language glyph, and that without loss of translation. For example, there’s no loss of meaning from Latin character “Z” to Chinese and back to Latin. Visually, you see that for the artist, re-styling a Latin glyph takes a-lot-less effort than to re-style say Hindi or Arabic or Chinese glyphs.

 

Not so fast though. The problem isn’t that simple. It can take several Latin characters to make up a word. For example, consider the Latin word "Come" then convert that to another language. It could read in Hindi,  in Gujarati, in Arabic and in Chinese. The Chinese translation recognizes case-sensitivity in the conversion. In the logical end, you see that the simplicity of Latin decreases as you coble-together character glyphs to form words: the longer the Latin words, the more they start to look as complex as Middle-Eastern and Asian writings.

 

In Part 2, we shall examine nuances and possible euphemisms in circulation by world fonts standards , namely the language preferred by the United Nations ISO standards.

 


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